How to Stop Enabling an Addicted Loved One
Enabling and helping can be confused as the same thing. However, these are different things that people need to understand. Enabling an addict is the same way as encouraging them in their addiction. Helping is the means where you do something for the addict, which they cannot do for themselves even when sober. Enabling is not helping. At this point, you may realize that you have been allowing your loved one with an addiction and substance abuse though you thought it was for the right course. You may be wondering how to change this now. Learning how to stop enabling substance abuse and addiction is very empowering.
It’s natural for people not to change according to your ideas and decisions. Moreover, it’s hard to change people. However, by changing your behaviors and reactions towards someone, they, in turn, change to suit your particular character. Below are some of the ways how you can stop being an enabler.
Don’t offer or buy drugs for the abuser
Drugs are in society. How we handle them is very paramount. Not offering or buying drugs for an addict may seem very obvious, but it’s not. Over the years, alcohol and other drugs have been in use as a social element for bonding. On many occasions, one offers to buy the substances. In the process, the addict may get the chance to indulge in substance abuse at that right moment since they have the opportunity. Socialization is not inadequate, but if it enables the addict to continue with the addiction, it should be limited. Stopping the enabling cycle means respecting that addiction is a sickness and avoiding participation.
Gain support from peers
Peer support groups are fundamental in the fight against addiction. These groups put family members in touch with others who have gone through the same ordeal of addiction. Information shared in these meetings can be very resourceful and transformative. According to surveys taken, over fifty percent of the people who come to these meetings understands the seriousness of the addiction. By communicating and sharing each other’s experiences, people may learn about the challenges they are facing. Listening can be beneficial in understanding how to deal with the problem and focus on success. These meetings are also a great way to network and help each other on how to overcome the nasty addiction treatment challenge.
Talk openly about the shift
After attending peer meetings, families may have a deeper understanding of the habits and behaviors they’d like to shift. The transition phase usually is very hard for both the addicted and the family. Open talks with addicted are generally constructive. The discussions are typically perfect when the victim is sober. Show the addict that change is as a result of love but not from a desire for revenge or punishment. Open-ended questions about addiction assist the person to understand the effects of substance abuse on the family and also to themselves. This conversation should be constant and short. The person should also state the behaviors they would want to change and also the reason for the change.
Avoid doing anything that aids the addict to continue with drug and substance abuse
You may be working and paying all the bills, even those that should be paid by the addict. Taking the addicts’ responsibilities is a sure way for the addict to use their resources to satisfy their addiction. The addicts should be left to cater to their responsibilities like shelter, clothing and paying some bills. Trusts, in most cases, shape the person to do better with the resources they attain. They also get to understand the struggles of gaining these resources and hence avoid use in activities like substance abuse.
Don’t make excuses or cover up the behavior
The addict being a loved one, temptations are there to lie for them. For instance, lying that they are sick and hence won’t make it work. These kinds of lies and cover-ups are the enabling facts for the addiction. Most of the substances abused, like alcohol, while taken in large quantities, the intoxicated person does things that they might not be aware of after getting sober. The family, on the other hand, may work as the clean-up crew, making sure that nothing incriminating of their loved one comes out. However, this is a way of enabling the addict to continue with the addiction. As a way of teaching a lesson to the addict, if they come home drunk and fall asleep in the yard, let them sleep. The next morning their own guilty will take over, and they will question themselves on the addiction. It’s not inhuman or insensitive; it just a way of allowing the addict to deal with the consequences.
Let law enforcement officers do their job
Addiction can be incredibly expensive. This lead to several activities for the addicts in the aim to satisfy their craving. Much of the behavior associated with addiction is illegal. These include stealing money, purchasing illicit drugs and driving while intoxicated. These are awful crimes and families with the money, or legal ability may help their loved ones escape the consequences of these addictions. However, this is not ethical. Judicial intervention is under use as the ultimate consequence of addiction. No one wants to go to jail nor have a criminal record, and this fear may help the addict from their addiction.